To the group of people who a decade ago paid the extra shifts to Jorge Barrio had fun on the karting rental track, now you should draw a smile when observing the route that he rehearses the pinamarense in national motorsport. Ten years have passed since his father, also Jorge, gave him a karting and began to transmit his passion for racing. First, sitting him next to him to watch Formula 1 and all the Argentine categories that were broadcast on television; later, accompanying him to the Mar del Plata kart track, from where Jorgito projected the dream present; currently, being the driver who transfers the young talent to each circuit. Champion in the first full season in Formula Renault 2.0, which was unfolded between September 2020 and February 2021, the premiere this year in the TC2000 reflects the virtues of the pilot: he prevailed on both dates and became the youngest winner in the history of the category: he is barely 16 years.
On February 13, he was champion of the FR 2.0 at the Oscar and Juan Gálvez racetrack, in Buenos Aires. The next day, sealed the addition to the Renault Sport Team to compete in TC2000 and lapped in a Super TC2000 car in the Buenos Aires Coliseum. “There were four laps and it was the first time I had driven a car with a roof. Tremendous, I couldn’t believe that all those things were happening to me in a matter of hours: a championship, securing a seat in the TC2000 and revving those engines that have incredible power. Because now, after a couple of races, I can tell you about the engine difference between a TC2000 and a Super TC2000. I still get excited when I remember those two days, ”highlights Barrio in his talk with LA NACION.On a wet track, Jorgito Barrio also taught his class in Formula Renault 2.0; with a victory he debuted the N ° 1 in the Croizet Racing car
The Buenos Aires racetrack gives you unforgettable moments. When the Super TC2000 contested the 200 kilometer race on November 19, 2019, Barrio made its presentation in FR 2.0 with the Croizet Racing team. “There were three races, the last dates of the championship, but for me they were very important due to the learning and evaluations that we were able to do with the team, in particular the knowledge of the car in a race situation. Without those races, possibly the adaptation would have cost me a little more, because the 2020 season never started due to the pandemic, “he says, who agreed to a seat through one of his karting mechanics:” Vasquito Luciano Albisua, with whom I worked from 9 to 14 years old, is a friend of Julián Croizet and he made contact with me. We tried three times, I passed and I debuted ”. He talks about the premiere with serenity, the same one he taught to finish second and eighth in the races that weekend.
But from his time in karting, Barrio showed speed and intelligence to navigate the circuits. And it was that ability that made it possible for him to travel to races in Brazil -South American Championship 2018 and 2019-, Italy -2017- and France -2017 and 2018, at the Le Mans kart track-, experiences that were positive from competitiveness rather than for the results. It also allowed him to observe the gap that exists between European and South American pilots, regarding financial support. “It is very difficult to compete with them, we do not have equal conditions: in my category there were 150 cars and on the weekend between the whole park there were around 750 karts. The material they have for us is almost inaccessible or when you have an item they have the one in the car and five spare ones. For example, because of a problem I couldn’t classify when I went to France in 2018: these are details that prevent you from being the protagonist. But the experiences are worth it, because of the level of the rivals and because of the friction, ”recalls who at the time of making the leap chose Formula cars over cars with a roof.
The day after being champion of Formula Renault 2.0, Jorgito Barrio secured a seat in Ambrogio Racing, the structure of Renault Sport Team, to race in TC2000
“We considered with my father that the monoposts would be a great step, a greater requirement and with which he would have a more complete learning. An example? Bypassing is more difficult and forces you to discover variants for optimal performance. And then, notice that it is easier to adapt from Formula cars to those with a roof than the other way around ”, explains Barrio, who in 2021 and on the same day you get into cars with and without a roof and with a five-minute break between one category and the other. “After the race in Buenos Aires I said that I wanted to rethink it, because between the podium of the FR 2.0 and the start of the TC2000 I barely had time to change my diver and have a bottle of Gatorade. But it has been decided, I will participate all year in both categories. I got off the TC2000 more tired, because of the heat and because the pedal board and the steering wheel are harder. I’m not saying that I control the FR 2.0 car to my liking, but that day I was able to drive comfortably. They are opposite cars, but it was easy for me to adapt, it felt like something natural ”, he analyzes, and the results prove him right: a victory on a date in the FR 2.0 and guide in the TC2000, winning the final two races of the 2021 calendar . “I’m not 100% acclimated to the TC2000 car, but I can’t ask for more: I took pole on my debut and we were strong throughout that weekend. The second race was more difficult for me than the first one, because we loaded kilos of ballast for the victory and the engine draw did not favor me and we were complicated. But the changes we tried worked and the friction of the rivals helped me to make a light and win again. If you told me if I was excited about winning both, I would tell you that I hardly dared to dream of one ”.
For the physical effort that the race weekend demands, Barrio has habits and also an eating behavior. “I go to the gym, although now the routine is only one hour due to sanitary restrictions; I also go for a run, although I like it less. And with meals I take care of myself, especially the day before the race. I do not deprive myself of anything, but I also do not make disasters when I am not with competitions. And the fundamental is hydration, the temperature in the TC2000 car demands it ”.
November 2019, Jorgito Barrio makes his Formula Renault 2.0 debut at the Buenos Aires racetrack; on that date, he achieved his first podium, finishing second
The speed he develops on the circuits does not overwhelm him in everyday life. He retraces the same tasks that many teenagers: is in the last year of high school and set up a meeting with friends, customs that do not escape young people their age, although the global pandemic of Covid-19 caused multiple alterations. He also took an English course, obtained the First Certificate, and in the summer help his father in the business, attending the counter of the hardware store that with effort opened his grandfather. “I do not suffer from school, although there are subjects that I still do not understand how they can be in a study program in 2021. I am not going to tell you which ones so as not to make the teachers feel bad and to prevent them from embarrassing me,” he says with a laugh .
Debut and first victory in TC2000; In the premiere in the category, Jorgito Barrio took pole position and won the final race under the Ambrogio Racing umbrella.
Rider traveling at 250 km / h on the tracks, 16 years of age prevent you from having a driving license and in Pinamar he travels by bicycle or he has to ask his parents – Jorge and Silvina – to take him. “It is something natural, it is a law and you have to comply with it. I could have a 50cm3 motorcycle, but at home there was no agreement, so I wait until May 6 to turn 17 and with the legal authorization of my parents to give the driving test. I hope I am not nervous and approve it, ”says the boy who makes his schoolmates turn on the televisions to watch the FR 2.0 and TC2000 races and comment on them at recess on Mondays.
It has no reference pilots, although because he is part of the Renault Sport Team and because he is an outstanding kartist, he is closer to Matías Milla. “I know few, but I like to listen and learn from their experiences in order to progress. I value stocks, on or off a track. For example, from the last race of Super TC2000 the award would be taken [Facundo] Ardusso, because he made a podium with a car inferior to that of Agustín Canapino and Julián Santero and also took the podium with a baby with Down Syndrome. That gesture, the baby and his family will never forget it. That is why I observe and value actions ”, analyzes, who uses the simulator as a game and not as a training tool.
The Formula Renault 2.0 champion car: the No. 41 always accompanies Jorgito Barrio
The factory of talents that is Formula Renault 2.0, also raced in the Metropolitan Formula 3, polished a diamond that already stands out also in the TC2000. He can’t drive on the street, but on the slopes and at 16 he is determinedly advancing towards his sporting goals. “There are more times you lose than you win, so you have to enjoy and appreciate when the wins come. Running in Europe? There are definitely no chances. With what budget are we going to fight the Europeans, the Asians, the North Americans …?
For Jorge Barrio, the weekend’s activity at the Oscar Cabalén racetrack, in Alta Gracia, will begin on Friday with the free practice of the Formula Renault 2.0 and the TC2000 practices, qualifying and Sprint race. It will be three days of action for the Pinamarense, the rider to overcome, after a successful start to the calendar.
The podium of the consecration in Formula Renault 2.0: behind the mask, the happiness of Jorgito Barrio for his first national title in monoposts
The presentation of four categories, with the Super TC2000 as the main attraction, the automobile program on the Cordovan track. The return of Matías Rossi, winner in the 2021 season premiere and absent on the second date due to being positive for Covid-19, and the presence of Emiliano Spataro to replace Rubens Barrichello, who was unable to fly from São Paulo due to restrictions Imposed by the National Government, the novelties that the Toyota Gazoo Racing team will present, which will try to hunt down Leonel Pernía (Renault Sport Team), leader of the championship.